Skoda is a Czech car manufacturer established in 1859 and has attained a good reputation from when it was owned by government and when it was privately owned. Initially, its name was Laurin and Klement but was later changed. Skoda is among the oldest manufacturers besides Opel, Peugeot, Tatra and Daimler.
At the beginning, the company made bicycles but later began making motorcycles. Motorcyclette was the first motorcycle made by the company; its engine was set on the handlebars. This motorcycle turned to be quite unreliable and dangerous and so was abandoned. In 1899, another motorcycle, the Slavia motorcycle, was introduced. In 1900, exportation of the Slavia to London had already began. Also, a motorcycle plant was established in Central Europe.By 1905, Skoda had started assembling cars; Voiturette A being the first model. In 1925, the arms manufacturer, Skoda arms, acquired Laurin and Klement so as to enlarge the non-arms manufacturing base. Ever since, the cars were manufactured with the Skoda marque. A new line of cars was introduced in 1930, which made it the best selling by 1936.
During and After the World War II
During World War II, Czechoslovakia had already settled, hence, Skoda Works focused in serving the German war. They manufactured components for military planes, military terrain vehicles and other weapon elements. Between 1940 and 1945, the US and UK forces had bombed the establishment frequently resulting in the company being dissolved in 1945.
After the war, 1101 series was introduced. It looked like an updated version of the previously launched car, Skoda Popular. In 1948, Skoda was separated from Skoda Works and produced a few cars; 445 Octavia Felicia, Skoda 440 Spartak and Skoda 1000 MB. In 1960, the Skoda Felicia was being imported to the US at a hefty price making it unreliable. No sales were made thereafter. Skoda continued creating old-fashioned cars like Estelle, the Skoda 105/120 and Rapid, which performed well in rallies.
Skoda, a Subsidiary of Volkswagen
In 1991, a joint venture agreement with Volkswagen was signed; Volkswagen had 30% in shares. This later increased to 60.3% in 1994 and 70% in 1995. The investment by Volkswagen helped in improving the engineering and style of Skoda. This resulted in production of great cars like, the Felicia model, that were worth every penny. This model received great sales from the entire Europe.
By 2005, there were over 30,000 cars sold in UK annually. This was the first time Skoda had a waiting list.
Skoda is currently a well-recognized brand and remains at the top in customer satisfaction surveys. Skoda are planning to release their electric SUV concept and are soon revealing, Skoda Superb (plugin version).
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